Friday, October 20, 2006

Rise ye Reds...The Theatre of Dreams awaits


I am a frustrated soul. Why? You may ask. Is it work? Is it the afternoon shifts? Is it the CAT preparations? NO, no and Hell NO!! I’m frustrated because the love of my life, my beloved Liverpool F.C isn’t at the top of the EPL. There is nothing more frustrating then watching a Liverpool side lose to Bolton Wanderers and Everton…wait there is…watching Liverpool draw 1-1 against Blackburn at Anfield. All the hopes that we Reds saw after the Charity Shield seem to fade away every weekend. Goalkeeping blunders and shaky defending by the otherwise awesome defenders have cost a lot. 7 matches played and only 2 cleensheets. Well the stats don’t speak well of the form that the Liverpool back four and Reina are in right now. Fabio Aurellio is still struggling to adjust to the Zonal Marking System. Pepe Reina is in a wretched goalkeeping form. Football pundits are adding to Rafa Benitez’s problems by being overcritical of the squad rotation policy. With these and many more problems galore, Liverpool are traveling this weekend to Old Trafford to meet their greatest rivals - Manchester United

The Red derby is always special-full of passion, hard tackles, tempers flying all around the park and some Man U fans trying to heckle the visiting fans during the chant of the holy mantra-YNWA. I remember Man U fans booing the visiting Glasgow Celtic fans for singing “You’ll Never Walk Alone”. The feeling is mutual, and the Red Devils are always in for something scarier than hell when they walk down that Anfield tunnel, look at the “THIS IS ANFIELD” signboard that has made many other teams crap in their pants and then walk out on the pitch to face music of the KOP. The venue for this weekend is however The Theatre of Dreams- probably the place to start fulfilling the elusive dream of capturing the Premiership.

For me, this is the make-or-break game of the season for Liverpool. People might say that this is just a game and there is a lot of football to be played. But the outcome of this game will definitely have an impact on the morale of the players. Man U are a team who won’t just beat you, they will make sure that they destroy the iota of confidence that you possess in your abilities. Ask Arsene Wenger and his Arsenal about the night they went 49-0 unbeaten to Old Trafford and came back with their shoulders drooping and haven’t won a title since then. Ask Jose Mourinho…his star studded line up hit a low for a while after their battle against United last season. So, a loss on Sunday would shatter any remaining hopes of bringing back the Premiership to Anfield…but a win could turn the entire season around.

What Liverpool need is inspiration. They need to treat this as the game of their life. It’s going to be a war and they must battle off all the pain that will be inflicted in the 90 mins. They need to bounce back on their feet if they are knocked down, I guess they will be...Rooney hasn’t scored in ages and the signs look ominous. Liverpool need to mark him down. Bring him down hard…that’s the only way to stop the raging bull. Well, if Rooney hasn’t scored, then so hasn’t Stevie G. Liverpool’s General must fire…nah..he will fire. Liverpool need inspiration and Gerrard needs to give just that. The contest will also be a battle of the super subs…Solksjaer and Garcia. Say whatever you want, Luis Garcia is effective. If Gerrard is credited for inspiring the Istanbul and Cardiff comebacks, then Luis Garcia is the guy who made the trip to those cities possible. I hope he has some role to play in this contest because he lives for big match situations.

Whatever, it’s going to be a treat to soccer fans as usual, and a Reds win will change their fortunes for the season. As usual, I shall be on the edge of my seat…ready to jump off in ecstasy when Riise, Gerrard, Kuyt, Alonso and company thump in one of their trademark bolters. As a true red, I’ll make sure that they won’t walk alone :)

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